Monday, March 27, 2017

Portrait Shoot: Pierre van Heerden

So a number of years back I did a shoot of Pierre van Heerden, South African actor, musical performer, playwright and comedian, at my old studio. It was just for fun, really. I was exploring some portraiture ideas, for a project I was considering at the time. We had a great time shooting these, exploring some cool ideas as we spent the morning talking rubbish, laughing and drinking coffee.

Fast forward some years later, and he contacted me to do an update of the images, but this time for his book.

The images were meant for publicity purposes, his marketing material and such, but what I want to share here is just some of the expression shots we did once we had those in the bag. Working with an actor in stills is great, as they know their face, they know expressions and have a large selection of facial "skills" to employ for a portrait.

I would simply call out a bunch of emotions/expressions and he would comply each time.

The "30 second portrait" I made is an idea that I got from Chase Jarvis, who did some 60 second portraits a couple of years ago and I really liked that. Something happens when you look at someone's face for an extended period of time. To me it seems like that defining moment in a picture can sometimes be a bit restrictive. Stretch that defining moment by 30 seconds, and your initial take of the portrait might differ. These videos explore that idea.

Anyways, here are some of the expression stills we ended up with:

(c) Danie Nel Photography cc

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